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Being a better employer: our top tips

man happy in office

Arguably the biggest challenge as an employer is securing – and retaining – the best talent. After all, the quality of your employees, is imperative to the success of your company. Yet research has shown that over 50% of companies worldwide are struggling to hold on to their best employees.

The truth is that top candidates have choice. And they’ll go for the companies that they deem most desirable to work for. Therefore, it’s vital to understand what people want from their employer.

We all know that a competitive salary and generous overall package is an important consideration. But so is employee satisfaction. Employees’ desires are ever evolving, and they’re now very different to a decade ago. To be truly happy, employees need to feel that they’re well equipped to succeed in both their professional and personal lives.

So, how do you become a better employer? 

Instill a sense of purpose

For employees to be truly dedicated to their work and driven to be their best – you’ll need to provide more than just financial reward. Having a sense of purpose boosts employee morale and overall job satisfaction. It also improves motivation, and consequently, productivity. 

A company vision can provide clear purpose to employees and unite team members. According to research, thriving employees are three times more likely to work for companies that have a strong vision.  

Promoting charitable giving as a company helps give employees further opportunity for fulfilment by contributing to the greater good. This is particularly valuable for people whose day-to-day roles vastly differ from such charitable causes. 

The more an employee feels they have purpose, the more engaged they are likely to be. Therefore, the more likely they are to be happy in their job. And it’s frequently proven that the higher the level of employee engagement, the higher the performance of a company

Promote flexibility

The rigid nine to five work day is becoming a thing of the past. It’s increasingly common for remote working and flexible hours to feature amongst companies’ core policies. Flexible working is very highly regarded by employees. Offering it makes it easier to attract and retain the best staff, and leads to greater job satisfaction and levels of happiness. 

Of working parents asked, workplace flexibility was recently ranked as the number one consideration in their job. Surprise, surprise; work-life balance came a close second. 

For flexible working policies to be most effective, employees should be encouraged to make use of them. They should be embedded within your company culture. Of course, there are occasions when such flexibility would be almost impossible to accommodate. But where it can be, empowering your employees in this way can vastly increase their quality of life, productivity and motivation. Not to mention make your company a highly sought-after place to work. 

Create a culture of wellness

On the whole, people are increasingly aware of the importance of their wellbeing. A healthy lifestyle – both in terms of physical and mental health – is vital. As an employer, this should also be a top priority. Not only does a company that prioritises the health and well-being of their employees benefit in terms of a happier, healthier workforce – but employees feel more valued on an individual level. 

If you want to be a better employer, there are numerous ways in which well-being can be promoted and encouraged. These range from small things such as providing healthy snacks and stand-up desks, to larger ones, such as holding health screenings or a course in meditation. Overall attitudes and culture are of utmost importance. Why not consider creating a workplace wellness program? One that encompasses many different initiatives and considerations, and fosters a variety of healthy habits. 

Without a company culture that facilitates these habits in the employees professional and personal lives, these gestures are unlikely to have any noticeable effect.  Employers must lead by example. They must ensure that the healthy initiatives are available for employees in a practical sense. For example; it’s one thing to pay employees’ gym subscriptions, but it means nothing if they’re expected to work late most evenings and miss out on the opportunity to use it.

Opportunities for the workforce to de-stress and exercise improve both physical and mental health. Being a better employer means giving your team the chance to socialise with colleagues, fostering a sense of well-being and improving teamwork across the organisation. 

Simple things such as encouraging walking from one desk to another, in place of making a phone call, can also have an effect. Even moderate exercise boosts mood. More active employees tend to be happier and less likely to suffer from depression. Healthier employees are also less likely to miss work through sickness. 

Value work-life balance

The value of work-life balance has become more frequently recognised over recent years. It’s an important consideration to employees when considering their next career move . In order to have a healthy, happy life – and to prevent burnout and stress – employees need balance between their professional and personal lives. 

Flexible working is one way of improving work-life balance, allowing employees to work around personal commitments. A healthy office culture should discourage excessive overtime and should instead encourage healthier habits.   

Staying on top of the evolving desires of your employees (and prospective employees) is a difficult task. But it’s certainly an important one. Not only does it put you in the best position to attract and retain staff, but happier staff have been shown to be up to 20% more productive. Ultimately, it’s a win-win situation, for you, your company and your workforce. 

If you have a position to fill, or are looking to grow your team, then an experienced recruiter can help. At Headway Recruitment, we use a combination of psychometric testing and our 35 years of experience to secure you the perfect candidate – who’ll fit in with the ethos and culture of your company. 

Mark Gill

By Mark Gill

Recruitment Director with a proven record of providing world class hires at all levels of office and management positions within the Leeds Bradford region. We use our unique Headway Recruitment Platform incorporating psychometric testing to find the top candidates. If you want access to the full local talent pool get in contact with the team at Headway. We help companies achieve growth through our unique approach. This ensures the candidates we place are the perfect fit. Companies are then best placed to get the best from each individual as they understand their motivating traits. Proud to be recognised as preferred supplier for several businesses in the Sunday Times top 100 firms to work for.
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